BISMARCK, N.D. — Doctors from around North Dakota will encourage members of the public to get the COVID-19 vaccine during a virtual town hall discussion hosted by the state Department of Health.

Residents can tune into the Microsoft Teams discussion at and will be able to submit questions about the vaccine to the doctors when it begins at 2:30 p.m. Central Time on Friday, May 7, according to a health department news release.

The physicians on hand will include state Field Medical Officer Dr. Joan Connell, of Bismarck; Dr. Casmiar Ngwaigwe, of Minot; Dr. Stephanie Foughty, of Devils Lake; Dr. Amy Oksa, of Dickinson; Dr. A. Marc Nielsen, of Grand Forks; Dr. David Field, of Bismarck; and retired Dr. James Buhr, of Valley City.

After a strong beginning to the state’s vaccine rollout, the rate of vaccination has begun to plateau. Many North Dakotans — and Americans — have expressed hesitancy or outright distrust toward the vaccine, which medical experts say is largely based on misinformation.